Sunday, August 03, 2008

A meme because I haven't done one in a few months

Random Questions. (:

What time do you go to bed?: very, very late
Do you drink coffee?: if it's good. ie espresso, or lebanese/greek
What was the last song you listened to?: Grace Kelly - Mika
How old were you when you got/gave your first kiss?: 15
What kind of ice cream is your favorite?: homemade macadamia
Have you ever met an internet friend in real life?: yeah, ages ago
Are you/have you ever been anorexic?: nope
Do you know which US states don't use Daylight Saving Time?: no! why would i care?
What size shoe do you wear?: 5.5 ish (australian)
Who was the last person you talked to on the phone?: My mum
Which is more important in your life, TV or Internet?: INTERNET
Do you have an iPod?: yes, a silver nano, my birthday present to myself
Have you ever been fired from a job?: nope
Have you ever taken something you knew belonged to someone else?: not that i can remember. probably when i was three or something.
Do you overuse smileys?: oh, probably
Who is better; Madonna or Blondie?: UNGH gnawing my fingers off
Who is better; Elton John or Billy Joel?: Elton John has a better voice
Do you know the song Total Eclipse Of The Heart?: I've heard it, couldn't sing it
When was the last time you ate something?: dinner - tomato soup
Name three website you visit every day:: desert calling, theologyweb, the ancient way
Have you seen all of the Jaws movies?: no, none!
Do you have Entomophobia?: what is that?
Do you know what Entomophobia is?: no.
Have you ever worn black eyeliner?: yeah, a few times. goth makeup ftw
Have you ever worn blue mascara?: NO.
Ever spiked your hair?: haha, yes. when i could still sit on it!
How long have you had a computer?: since I was 11
Have you ever written something, and published it on the internet?: does a blog count?
Do you have a crush on anyone at the moment?: no
Do you like Starbucks?: no! there are much better aussie coffee chains
Have you ever owned a kitten?: i own one now
Is it raining where you are?: not that i know, but it's supposed to tomorrow
When was the last time you played cards? (not on the computer): probably last summer
Can you play chess?: yes, but I haven't in ages
Ever owned a pair of the original Nikes? (white, with only a single swoosh): I think so? Don't remember.
Ever worn leg warmers?: no
When was the last time you read a book over 700 pages long?: Les Miserables...a few months ago
How many people are on your IM friends list?: hahahaha a few hundred probably. Im an internet tragic
How many hours of sleep do you usually get?: 9 or so, often more
Have you ever drank cherry coke?: yeah, i liked it
Do you prefer using pens or pencils?: pens unless i'm doing shorthand
Have you ever skipped for a long distance?: a lot, i used to skip everywhere just for fun
Have you ever had a black eye?: not that I remember
The torture is over, you may now leave. (:

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Saturday, August 02, 2008

A bit o'this'n'that

I've always struggled with depression, when I care to admit it. I spent half my childhood in a fantasy world talking to the invisible people who weren't there, telling stories, dressing myself in words to make myself someone who I'm not. I never fit in, really, and I still find it hard to believe that I've found somewhere where I'm accepted, for better or worse.

And, especially when I'm home alone, I end up in this weird funk again. I've been feeling out of sorts all day, possibly because I haven't done anything. I know it's not good for me to stay in bed all day but I do it, and then I end up feeling out of it and moping. It's too easy to be lonely, especially when my sister is out working or with her boyfriend or something. My parents are away for the weekend, and I'm trying to be positive but not always successful at that. Add to that that someone had left a door open and the room was cold, making me more achy and miserable than usual...yeah.

If it wasn't a fast I'd be curled up eating cookies or chocolate, but I've eaten the last of my dark chocolate and don't have a car to get more! Oh well, it's not good for me anyway.

I can write stuff like I did the other night, but when it comes down to it I'm just me and I don't write stuff like that often. That post came from about a month or so of trying to wrestle out some stuff I still haven't got a handle on. And I still struggle with stuff even though cognitively I know what the truth it. Writing something and believing it all the time are two different things.

But that's ok.

Before I started work tonight I took photos of Mystery X, which I've put a few stitches in recently. Here you go:

The East house:
East pt 6 1st August 08

The South house:
South pt 6 1st August 08

The east house now has the pink chimneys done, and just needs the central chimney and the backstitching done :)

It's coming together quicker than before this time, or at least that's how it seems.

Would you think I was nuts

If I bought one of these?

It's an abaya, the outer dress/coat/mixture of both worn by Islamic women - but this one has a hood. I reckon they're awesome, especially in a dark chocolate brown or something. I'd wear that all the time - better than a hoodie anyday, much more elegant! I love abayas, but I don't have the guts to buy one - yet. They're not beyond my means price-wise either, most places sell them for quite reasonable prices especially with the current exchange rate.

Here is the link to that one, anyway.

Friday, August 01, 2008

It's interesting

I spent so long trying to figure out how to 'do this Orthodox thing' properly, and it's just starting to sink in that maybe I'm not doing as badly as I thought I was. Oh, I've got a loooong way to go - who doesn't? But most of the stuff you associate with Orthodoxy isn't really that big a deal, and it's taken me three and a bit months baptised plus nine months as a catechumen to start to realise that I was being an idiot. Joy. I have been assured that I will do this for the rest of my life, which is such a hopeful prospect, right? The funny thing is that I say that sarcastically but I know people who would seriously agree with it. I want to be them when I grow up! Unfortunately I know that they got to where they are through some pretty hard stuff, and hard work. That bit I don't like, but I'll keep walking, because there's nothing else I can do :)

You see people who can quote the Fathers on any subject, cook brilliant food for the fasts, have glorious icon corners, you get women for whom wearing scarves and long skirts is what they do evvery day, you get monks and nuns (though even I am not so much an idiot to expect myself to measure up to THEM in daily life), you get people that know how all this stuff works while I'm still learning on my feet. And what's got to me recently is that that's ok. In the meantime I am me. I light a fistful of candles every time I go to Church, for other people, because that's just what I do. I talk to people, and I pray that I help them not hinder them. These things are all good, but partly some of them take time, and partly they're different walks. I have my own strengths, and my weaknesses which I am all too aware of. As with my approach to daily life with my illnesses, all I can do is take things day by day and not expect too much of myself. I have my own joys, and I must not be totally useless or people wouldn't want to hang around with me, much less go out of their way to pick me up for something, or take me home, or go for coffee, or ring me up for my name day and have their family yell Χρονια πολλά to me over the phone. Nothing is overnight, just like my stitching. I pick big projects for my stitching, and work a little at a time. This is no different.

Figuring that out, and figuring out that the best way to fix my flaws is to simply live the Orthodox life - to say my prayers, even if all I can manage is the morning and evening keep the fasts (or NOT, depending on the guidance of my priest - my friend pointed out, laughing, that when I was eating normally during Lent on the orders of my priest, in that way I kept the fast), to go to Church when I can, to sit with my prayer rope in my hands and pray for myself or others, to give as I can, to help as I can, to offer what kindness I am able and bring what beauty I can to the world - that is all that is asked of me, and that is acheiveable. As a convert in a country where Orthodoxy is still largely within certain ethnic groups - people who have grown up with the customs and beliefs of the Church as daily life, I've always felt somewhat behind the 8-ball, trying to catch up. And that's stupid, and I don't know why it's taken me so long to figure it out. I am not Greek. I am not Russian. I am not Lebanese. I am Australian, the descendent of German peasants and Cornish miners, among others. I am small and slight with recessive gene brown eyes, and golden toned skin, a throwback to my great-grandparents from the mining country of Cornwall, who would be horrified at my being Orthodox but I can't help that :) So I'm learning to cook to fit the fasts with Greek and Lebanese food, yes, but also Australian - the mixture of world cuisines that we steal and adapt. Authentic Indian curries, not so authentic British style curries, ANZAC biscuits. Hippie healthy lentil and pumpkin soup, Italian pasta sauces, tomato or vegemite sandwiches. I say my prayers in English, not Greek or Arabic - most of the time! I celebrate my own culture while happily joining the cultures of my parishes. I danced for years in a classical style, and now I am learning on my feet (literally) how to dance a completely different way. And this is all okay. This is just me.

So I'll stay me, wearing old fashioned clothes one day and dresses and skirts over jeans the next. I'll wear a mixture of beautiful, fashionable, or just fun hats everywhere I go, and sometimes to Church. I'll wear my scarves in Church even if I get funny looks from some people - this is me, and its something I was convicted over long before I ever 'turned Orthodox'. I'll have mad fits of baking and make food for everyone at my fellowship group and anyone else that will eat them. I'll talk to strangers on trains, and listen to their life stories and their problems and whatever else they tell me. I'll stay Kyri, having to pronounce Kyriaki sloooowly whenever I encounter non-Greeks (including one ROCOR priest, much to my amusement). I'll listen to a mixture of ABBA, Jars of Clay, Orthodox Chant done by monks and the radio. I'll be satisfied with the icons I have, and lighting candles before them as I say my prayers, because I'm blessed to have what I have, each one a gift. And when I do get more, I'll love them too, because I choose them for reasons, not just because I long to have the beautiful walls of icons that some of my friends have. I'll read recipe magazines for fun and attempt to feed myself and my family with the concoctions found therein. I'll happily stitch on whatever's 'calling' and know that I will finish something, one day.

I'll be myself. I'll just live life as I am now, and know that it is by prayer and the life of the Church that God changes us, not our trying to change ourselves. At least, that is my prayer.

I didn't start out trying to write this. I meant to write a short paragraph then write about all sorts of other things...but I am glad I did. I don't usually write long pieces about my faith, but try as I might it will escape into my blog like this, and I'm glad it does. It's as much my life as anything else - more than most things, really. So there you go - that's me.

The end of the month, and new month goals

Ages ago I used to set goals every month. I don't tend to stick with a piece for too long, but they're not bad for guidance to keep me sorta on track. So I'll post them in a minute...but first - haikus!

Ok, what do haikus have to do with anything? Well, not much. But a bunch of us on one of my Orthodox forums started writing haiku (is that the plural?) about the forum named Desert Calling, or about anything really.

Here are a few of mine:

a home for oddballs
who live, love, laugh, sharing life
the aim: theosis

this is addictive
writing these important things
in a few short lines

trying to do math
to make silliness seem like
most profound wisdom

my priest says desert
is where a monk is praying
so in my church then?

monks are nice people
but they challenge us young ones
to do harder things

desert on the net
a place to come relax and
to find my soul food

my kitten Koukla
is an Orthodox kitten
she likes lentil soup

the aim - theosis
but the journey is harder
than i ever thought.

dormition fast now
eat a lot of chilli beans
and ignore the steak

(for us, the fast for the Dormition of the Theotokos begins today, August 1, and goes until the 15th, the feast of the Dormition)

One poster, Reader John, made me laugh:

I thought to myself
I forgot my umbrella
I'm Friedrich Nietzsche

God is dead, said I
Then, Nietzsche is dead, said God
I guess I was wrong

The desert is a
Really, really big sandbox
With cacti and snakes

The days are quite hot
The nights are so cold and dark
At least it's quiet


That was wonderfully off topic. Tonight's study was beautiful - on Mark 9, how good is that for Father matching the text with the feasts (next Wednesday is the feast of the Transfiguration, and that's the topic of the first section of Mark 9) without meaning to - he comments that we are probably doing the slowest study of a Gospel ever since we started it in February, though we've had a few weeks off for other topics (Lent will do that, as will the Great Feasts). We did Compline after and I was felt...peaceful. Light. Joyful, I suppose. As I joined the line to kiss Father's hand and say goodnight Dmitri said to me that he always wanted to see the smile on my face that I had then. And then we went home...and Troy and I really shouldn't be put in the same car without Jeremy to keep an eye on us. Even then I hate it, but without Jeremy we end up like cat and dog and it's not good. I didn't kill him, or tip something over him. I am somewhat proud of this. *sighs* I'm feeling...uncomfortable because of that I suppose. Life is still good and without struggle we wouldn't grow but some things are avoidable. This is. It won't happen again soon if I can help it.

I'm home now, with a bright candle lit in front of the icons and I'm going to take some solace in the Psalms, God-willing. They help, a lot - the prayers are universal, yet they fit my life. Doxa to Theo.

So, goals?

Apparently I totally forgot to make them last month. So, as usual, I'll start the month with the new ones, under headings.

  • finish row 15 of A Restful Night
  • reach 7.5% on St Nicholas
  • enjoy stitching
  • work on something else at least once
Other craft
  • get the dress that's half-made finished
  • do a row on Moonshadow quilt
Religious stuff
  • get my icons in the mail and set them up by my bed
  • fix my memorisation of Psalm 50/51 (is memorising it in OSB text too much to ask of myself? hmm)
  • memorise at least one other Psalm
  • get to the Paraklesis service at least twice during the Dormition fast
  • learn to cook something new during the fast
  • try to remember to thank God for good and bad alike
School stuff
  • finish and send in assignment 3 for S.o.s. by the end of week 4 (15th)
  • get something done on assignment 2 or figure out a way to make it not have to be done
  • at least one open book one closed book summative for History
  • get my history notes up to date and keep them up to date for Comparative Study
  • try and do some noting for Depth Study (good revision for ^)
  • maths DI by the end of week 3 (8th)
  • maths test sometime soon after
Hoo boy. To meet these, I think these are this week's goals (week end 8th August):
  • Maths DI
  • KAI 2 notes
  • closed book essay on KAI 2
  • write the survey for S3 and send it out
  • write history notes for week 1, and this week
  • work on Psalm 50/51
  • attend the Paraklesis on Thursday and maybe Wednesday if I'm hanging around after the DL long enough (and I go)
  • finish row 14 of ARN during the the UFO SAL and Wednesday
  • stitch on St Nicholas on other days
  • attempt some work on the dress

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Trying to take my own advice

I stitched this afternoon but two of the family are coming down with something like the flu that comes with aches - and I think I might have it too. It's always hard to tell since I feel like I have the flu permanently but my hands don't usually ache this much for no reason. I finally took a couple painkillers tonight with dinner but I think they're wearing off.

When in frustration with the universe (and my brain not working - my eyes aren't focussing properly and I'm finding it hard to think) I gave up working on froggy today here is where I got to:
30th July 08

Two complete eyes now, roughly 20150 stitches. Not a bad stint, not as good as last week but then my eyes were focussing and my hands weren't killing me last week! I was sick, just differently. I watched tv without anything in my hands except Koukla for a couple hours (a few of you will probably die of shock at hearing that), enjoying a This is Your Life about Shannon Noll, Spics&Specs (a sort of musical game show half comedy show that is really hard to explain), bits and pieces of US So You Think You Can Dance and the Gruen Transfer, which I love. Finally, I settled down on the couch again, picking up Mystery X. I've got a length and a half of thread in but I'm just struggling with my hands not wanting to work so I've given up for the night.

I cooked dinner tonight - I often do on Wednesday or Friday since I'm the weirdo that eats vegan twice a week (and for an entire fortnight, come this Friday, hooray for the Dormition Fast!) but I was not in the mood for anything fancy. Instead of buying normal magazines I buy recipe magazines, and not the fancy ones - the excellent budget yummy ones. I get sooo many recipes from there, and it saves me from meat&three veg every night (which, incidentally, I hate if it's done the traditional way, bland and boring. My parents disagree) because Mum likes them too. So, with 'not fancy' in mind, I pulled this chilli recipe out of July's Recipes+ magazine.

Chilli Beans with Wedges
Serves 4, prep 10minutes cook20minutes
900g frozen potato wedges (we did not eat anywhere near the whole packet and we used 750g! Also, we did tater-tots or their equivalent for my coeliac sister who can't eat wedges, and I prefer them)
1tbs olive oil (Don't bother measuring. Just plonk a bunch in, enough to fry an onion)
1 brown onion, chopped
400g can red kidney beans, rinsed
400g can borlotti beans, rinsed
425g can sweet corn kernels, drained
375g jar enchilada sauce (or chunky salsa if you are like me and can't find enchilada sauce!)
1 avocado, diced (in season here at the moment, YUM)
1/2 cup coriander leaves, roughly chopped
light sour cream, to serve (or use hummous if you are being vegan)

1. Put the wedges/tater tots in to cook. The magazines had instructions but they're on the packet anyway.
2. While that's cooking, heat oil in a large saucepan over moderate heat. Cook and stir onion for five minutes or until soft. Add beans (BOTH CANS, I forgot one and had to add it and reheat), corn and sauce and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for five minutes.
3. Spoon chilli into serving bowls. Top with avocado, coriander and a dollop of sour cream/hummous. Serve with whatever potato you cooked.

This is incrediby easy, quick, and really really yummy. My sister likes it, and she hates basically anything vegan I cook, though it doesn't help that I like spicy curries and she is of the view that food should not make you cry. It's also good cold as leftovers, if you have any left! I am so going to make this again, possibly in the next week or so given I'll be cooking up all my easy vegan recipes again - for 1, generally, since my family is not Orthodox and they cope with being vegan twice a week but more than that is kinda pushing it. This is quicker than almost anything else I have cooked that fits the rules for nestia, the fasts. It does have oil in it, which breaks the rules for people who keep the fasts strictly but my priest would have my head if I tried to do that...

As to the post title? I kinda...decided that I'd do something about the well known fact that everyone comes to me for advice but I can't take it myself. So I dug out the box of index cards that I use for everything from memorising Greek or Arabic vocab to test preparation to writing out prayers and Bible verses to read or memorise or both. And blu-tak (stuff you stick posters up with ) And coloured markers. And attacked the wall next to my bed :)

Next to my bed

The top three cards are a summary of Orthodoxy quoted by Fr Thomas Hopko, I can't remember who he was quoting though. "Go to Church. Say your prayers. Remember God." I have yet to find better *grins* The others are all common sense stuff:

"Do an hour's schoolwork every day as well as lessons. Saves stress later!"

"Say morning and evening prayers regardless of the time of day" - I have a tendency to wake up at 3 and feel ridiculous saying morning prayers, especially the ones that say that say greeting the dawn etc

"Go to bed before midnight. The internet will not explode without you!"

"Get up in the morning. The sooner you're up, the better you'll feel

"Take your meds. Forgetting just makes you feel worse" (marginally, my meds make me feel sick too!)

"If you feel tired at night, sleep. Don't you think your body knows what you need?"

The final few cards are one with my schedule of medications, and two that have the prayer for an ill person (or one of them) on them. It's readable from my bed, but not really in the photo unless you go to the full size view.

I have a confession to make though - my bed doesn't usually get made (getting out of it is usually effort enough) but I wasn't going to take a photo without it made, so it got made....and i'll be in bed sleeping soon enough!

Anyway, enough. I'll ramble if I'm not careful!

You know it's time to put the stitching down

when as you sign into blogger and click on your blog name you notice that you have 336 posts...and automatically think of the DMC thread with that number. Incidentally, there's a lot of 336 in A Restful Night, so I have been around it a lot recently, if that's any defence!

It really hit me the other day that it is week 2 of term 3. I only have this 10 week term and 3 weeks of next term to get all my work done, and some of it the deadlines really can't be extended. Course-work wise I am up to date, for which I am thankful. But I have a math test and an assignment overdue, and at least two more tests by the end of the year as well as a trial exam - they don't stress me too much. I have a history essay I should really get around to doing, since it was due in March (!!!) if I can find the assignment sheet for it, or else email the teacher, and I need to catch up some of the timed essays now that I know I can do them at home. I have a major essay to research and write by the end of the year too, but I know my topic (roughly) so if I narrow it down really soon I should be able to get it done provided I'm reasonably disciplined. I have a trial exam for that too.

But oh goodness. Studies of much as I like the course, I have a mostly AWOL class that I have to try and do group work with, and the assignments make me groan and not want to work on them. The latest one isn't too bad and I just need to grit my teeth and do it, but I'm not feeling inspired. The class drives me nuts, which is a shame - I like the teacher, and the course itself is good.

But I am one and a half assignments behind, and am about to start my major research essay (and don't have any inspiration for a topic) and a major group task...sigh. And there are 8 and a half weeks left of this term. It will happen. That is time enough. But time seems to stand still for me until I have none left.

I need to find a way of motivating myself, especially when I'm feeling this miserable.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A wordle

Here's a wordle of my blog:

Just thought id post it 'cause it made me smile. It looks cool, doesn't it?

A grey day

I've been tempted to write something as an entry for ages, but not sure what.

I'm very tired, my everything aches and my brain feels foggy, which makes things hard. Its UFO night, so froggy is out to play - I've got about 60 stitches done so far but it's all confetti and I'm finding it hard to concentrate.

As far as math is concerned I am up to date, thankfully. So now I need to get this assignment done, mailed, and do the test. Then all will be well. S.o.s. is...*sigh*. I don't even know where to begin.

I'm weak, and sick, and my sleep cycle is out of whack. I had a lot of fun on the weekend, but now I'm paying for it. So, I stay here at home. I got asked to show and tell my work last when company came calling so I had froggy, St Nicholas, Mystery X and Peaceful Paradise out. That was nice, except it's making me have itchy feet again. I'm going to be good and keep working here on froggy, or go back to St Nicholas of I get sick of frog. To do something else is tempting, but not going to happen, if I can help it!

Kitty has discovered the wonders of 'outside' and has been pouncing on bugs, sticks and whatever moves, and playing with our oldest cat. I approve of this, especially since it means she isn't destroying floss this way (her other favourite pastime).

Its Tuesday night, tv night. Its windy, and my family are coming home later. It's been very cold and overcast all day, and I have the heating on but I'm still cold. But this too will pass. For now, I'll go back to my embroidery. At least it's raining, and when I'm home indoors I am thankful for that - we need rain desperately.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

So close...

Just before I go to bed, I thought I'd post this. This is where froggy is at after a night on the couch watching movies on tv:

26th July

About 150 stitches shy of the end of the row. So close... And look at that EYE! It's all done now, and the detail around You don't see these things when you're stitching them.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Up again, sort of

Thankyou Gayle and Rosko/Harry, very much. By the prayers of the Saints...

Today is a little easier, mostly because someone who probably doesn't want me to name him here smacked some sense into me. Thankyou, S. Again I'm listening to Jars of Clay, and listening to this bit in "Oh My God" made me laugh, its me.

Sometimes I can not forgive, and these days mercy cuts so deep,
If the world was how it should be, maybe I could get some sleep.
While I lay, I'd dream we're better, scales were gone and faces lighter,
When we wake we hate our brother, we still move to hurt each other,
Sometimes I can close my eyes and all the fear that keeps me silent,
Falls below my heavy breathing, what makes me so badly bent?
We all have a chance to murder, we all have the need for wonder.
We still want to be reminded that the pain is worth the plunder.
Amen. I finally got to sleep around 4am last night, after chatting to the aforementioned friend and realising a few home truths, none of which were nice but all were true. And we fall down, and we get back up again. I have that quote by St John Climacus on the whiteboard that our former tenants put on the pantry/larder (you can walk in, it's awesome!) door -
"Do not be surprised that you fall every day; do not give up, but stand your ground courageously. And assuredly, the angel who guards you will honour your patience."
I was driving with my dad in the country today, we have a place we like to go and eat at when he's home during the day, and we tend to chat along the way. I mentioned that last night's study had been on the Sermon on the Mount, holiness, fools for Christ and relics. Dad asked me if the Orthodox take was that the SotM was hyperbole, or what? I said it's a beautiful thing to strive to attain to. Just most of us fail. But that doesn't make it hyperbole, because there are people who live it. He commented that it sounded like an 'impossible possibility' (which is a good thing in my dad's language) and asked if it was connected with the above quote. Which totally made my day, because it's been there for months and noone's commented on it except my sister to say that I wrote weird things everywhere. I love that quote, its actually part of a longer section but there's only so much you can fit on a whiteboard! It's also my signature on one of my internet forums. I was told a while ago that I wasn't allowed to argue theology with my dad, so I keep things general. To not talk about what we studied in some way would be totally unnatural, so I just say things and avoid arguments, biting my tongue which is harder than words can say sometimes. And do stuff like writing quotes on the whiteboard, and showing the icons I plan to buy, and stuff.

Last night was fun, even though I ended up in a black mood when I got home. We had a bit of a chatter through it all, and when talking about fools for Christ (Saints who did crazy seeming things to cover their holiness, or to make a point, or both - its a calling, and RARE) Father informed us that we weren't allowed to go home and decide to be fools for Christ in the morning and throw rocks at the bishop. Someone was heard to murmer 'but that would be fun!' which produced giggles from the surrounding people at that section of the table. I love the stories of fools for Christ, and my sister's favourite Saint was/is one, St Maximos the Hut Burner. You can always tell when I've been sick for days, I make an effort when I get dressed to go somewhere. See?

home from church

You can't see in the photo, but I had my wonderful black beat up doc martens on, which I discovered are wonderful Church shoes because they support my ankles which makes it easier to stand. Who knew? I got home, took my coat off, and my sister (who despairs of my lack of fashion sense) squealed 'you are so CUTE! I want to keep you!' hence the photos got taken. Church clothes - please note I am wearing a *skirt* over my jeans (ok a dress) - my friend did the same last night as it was cold and we couldn't be bothered wearing a normal skirt and freezing our legs. I'm wearing a hat too - for one thing I need it in this weather for two it works instead of a scarf and is less dorky. Much as I like scarves...

I woke up a bit after 10 today after dozing for a couple hours - someone fed kitten red bull again or something and she decided to come bouncing in, bounce-thud on my legs, back and head then run away again, before repeating the process a few times. I think this is Koukla-speak for WAKE UP SILLY! I duly ignored her. I had to get up though, because my lesson yesterday had to be rescheduled. I got a 1:1 lesson with my teacher which was good - apparently I am more caught up than most of my class with the course work (YES!!) and my Mum is now allowed to supervise my timed essays and tests which she wasn't before (no immediate family) which makes life a lot easier since whenever I had to sit a test before I had to go to school with her which really knocked me around. And I might get to drop one or two of the outstanding timed essays and maybe one of the untimed, which would make life a LOT easier...we'll see. Now to get caught up with my studies of societies and all will be well :)

Lesson over, Dad and I drove out to get lunch, and sat in a park nearby to eat it, which was lovely, and then drove back to go down and pick up my sister to take her to the airport. Got there, all well...and she realised that her luggage was in the car my mum had taken to work. 40 minutes from where we were. ACK! Dad took the wheel then, and a few frantic phone calls later we got to where she works, grabbed the luggage, and drove as fast as legally possible to the airport. We made it in time, thankfully, saw her off (she's visiting a friend in Melbourne for the friend's 18th birthday and coming home Sunday), and drove home. The vigil is on tonight, but logistically it was just going to be bad, and I'm tired, and sick. Eventually I told Jeremy I'd stay home tonight and rest since we have the dance tomorrow night! So I get a quiet night in, which is fine.

I forgot to post this the other day - on the Stitch&Stash forum they run a 'UFO night' where you designate a piece fitting that description and work on it every Tuesday night (or whenever). Mine ended up being Wednesday, because I was a zombie Tuesday, and I got a lot done - here is QS A Restful Night after my work that day:
23rd July 08 2

Froggy is appearing! I'd put this down in disgust in about April, because I'd gone cross country and my tension was a little off. I wasn't sure if I'd have to frog, so I figured better to put it down before I threatened to cut it up! So I picked it up, ironed it (it needed it) and put it on my tightest q-snaps, and it's being quite happy now. I'm working roughly the way I used to (before I deviated into cross country) but much faster - apparently I've got quicker, which is nice! 600+ stitches the other day, woohoo! She's still on the frame, I'd like to finish off this row before I put her down and go back to St Nicholas. Or else I'll just work on her until I get sick of her, which is what often happens with me and projects - I can't rotate on a system to save my life. If I pick up a project, it gets worked on for the forseeable future.

So now I am tired, and thinking of throwing some pasta in a pot and heating up a jar of mushroom and tomato pasta sauce for dinner. Mushroom+tomato pasta sauce is yummmy, one of my favourite Friday foods.

Glory to God for all things!


You have led me to the sadness
I have carried this pain
On a back bruised, nearly broken
I'm crying out to you

I will sing of Your mercy
That leads me through valleys of sorrow
To rivers of joy

When death like a gypsy
Comes to steal what I love
I will still look to the heavens
I will still seek your face

But I fear you aren't listening
Because there are no words
Just the stillness and the hunger
For a faith that assures

Alleluia, alleluia
Alleluia, alleluia

While we wait for rescue
With our eyes tightly shut
Face to the ground using our hands
To cover the fatal cut

And though the pain is an ocean
Tossing us around, around, around
You have calmed greater waters
Higher mountains have come down

Alleluia, alleluia
Alleluia, alleluia

Oh, Lord sing of Your mercy,
Your mercy
- "The Valley Song", Jars of Clay

JoC write a lot of bittersweet stuff that is actually theologically pretty good. I've been listening to a lot recently, needing something new to listen to. Insomnia when you're not allowed on the internet (which I define as anything unnecessary - forums, surfing etc fall under this category - priests homily type blogs are grey area, blogs of my own don't count as I could do that on my computer, responding to comments DO...) is hard. Stupid Friday.

I have a vigil tomorrow night. I am looking forward to it...and yet not. Which is a weird feeling. And I'm sick, and its cold, and life is not fun...but God is good.

Have mercy Lord and heal your suffering servants.